Sorensen to lead international workshop

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A shaky economy and declining university budgets ensure a challenging future for business school administrators. Richard Sorensen, dean of Virginia Tech’s Pamplin College of Business, will help lead an international workshop in San Francisco this month, looking at how schools can thrive during a recession.

The annual Deans Conference, sponsored by the AACSB International — The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business — added the program in response to the rapidly changing global economy. Sorensen and Gail Naughton, business school dean at San Diego State University, will direct the discussion.

It’s expected to attract at least 100 business school leaders from the U.S. and other countries, according to Sorensen, a former board member for AACSB International. The workshop will offer a forum for attendees to “work face-to-face with each other to understand the issues, think strategically and develop action plans that respond effectively to the challenges brought on by shifting markets and contracting economies,” he says.

The concept for the workshop was based on feedback and requests for assistance from some of AACSB International’s 1,000 member schools. Topics that will be addressed include: funding program needs, fundraising, faculty recruitment and retention, enrollment management, student placement assistance, services delivery to business and government and researching and teaching relevant issues.
Sorensen is the longest-serving business school dean in the U.S., having led the Pamplin College of Business for 27 years. Before that, he served as dean of the School of Business at Appalachian State University for nine years.

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